10 ways to help you not worry – 9. Write down what is of most importance.

Yesterday a Pastor was sharing a short devotional word in one of my regions prayer meetings. He is nearing retirement but you wouldn’t know it looking at his energy. He described how desperate he has been for a word from God for his church. So much so that for 25 days last month he spent every afternoon on his face before God in prayer until he got his breakthrough and heard what he should do. I tell you this as I read this next sentence from Jesus as he guides us away from worrying.

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6 v 33)

Your circumstances may mean you cannot give up 25 afternoons in prayer but you can find a way instead of worrying to choose the prayer Jesus taught us, ‘Let your kingdom come’.

Is your kingdom one of sweat, toil, pain and headache, where there is much effort and little return? Are you worrying about many things? Then write down what is most important. For the famous Jesuit, Thomas Merton, it was to desire God. He wrote this prayer that anyone can pray:

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always, though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone. (“The Merton Prayer” from Thoughts in solitude)

St Augustine said, “God wants to give us something, but cannot, because our hands our full – there’s nowhere for Him to put it.” The time has come to declutter. You need to simplify. Strip back the many things in your life for the important one. To seek first His kingdom. This is your priority. Stop chasing and start being who God has made you. Being right in who you are and what you do is to seek His righteousness. Write down what comes first.

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